The effect of espresso drinking on cholesterol - Page 4

Want to talk espresso but not sure which forum? If so, this is the right one.

#31: Post by Kenntak »

Well, this thread has kind of depressed me. I guess I should limit my espresso drinking to one double a day.

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#32: Post by howard seth »

Why one double a day? Better to burn out than to fade away.

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#33: Post by GC7 »

A2chromepeacock wrote:To pile on to the medical-advice/opinions-on-the-net-might-be-hazardous theme, a cholesterol/hdl ratio of 4 or less is best: a lower total cholesterol, or a higher HDL component. At my hospital's lab, the reference range is up to 4.5; higher than that is elevated :)

Kindly quote the proper person next time you go off on a rant. That was not my statement. I suggested adrian get advice from his dr and made a comment on genetics which I am quite qualified to make.


#34: Post by AmishMenno »

jherm77 wrote:+1 100%

As a medical professional, I found this topic fascinating. As you can see I don't post often, but visit the site everyday to learn more about coffee from IMO the most knowledgeable enthusiasts on the net. Amazingly enough, now medical advice is being given from non-medical professionals on a coffee site. Whats next, financial advice? On the bright side though, everyone has the best of intentions. I know Adrian will follow the doctors orders and was seeing if any medical professionals (hopefully) had any insight.

I don't mean to be disrespectful in any way, but if we were being responsible, thinking adults we wouldn't be giving medical advice without proper training and experience.
This may be true but my findings are that most medical professionals/doctors do not have the knowledge or wisdom to give good nutritional advice on what to put in our mouths for better health


#35: Post by AmishMenno »

drdna wrote:Should I give up espresso?

The concentrated aromatic oil fraction in French Press coffee and the corresponding crema in espresso may contribute to elevations in "bad" LDL cholesterol and depressed "good" HDL cholesterol, as described in various studies.

Well, I recently got my cholesterol checked and it was a whopping 238. Not good at all. I already exercise about four or five times a week and eat a vegetarian diet. The only dairy product I consume is the milk I use to make my cappuccino.

I love espresso, but I am seriously thinking I should quit if it is going to affect my health.
Is your diet a real vegan diet? Or do you still eat cheese and meat? I drink lots of espresso and small amounts of milk for cappuccinos, my total cholesterol was 147 last check. Keep record of your eating habits and you may find other things you put into your mouth as the problem with cholesterol. I do not claim to be a doctor, but take advice from some very wise ones.

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#36: Post by sweaner »

Much of this is genetic anyway. My grandmother had a Cholesterol of >300 and smoked for most of her life. Lived to 89, fairly healthy until the end. I hope I got enough of her genes.
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#37: Post by A2chromepeacock »

GC7 wrote:Kindly quote the proper person next time you go off on a rant.
Oops! My apologies. :oops: Not sure how I messed up with the quote-referencing thing. I meant to reference sbien--no offense intended! I certainly hope it didn't come across as a rant, either-I intended it as a slight point of clarification, that's all.
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#38: Post by Peppersass »

As others have mentioned, consult your doctor and follow his/her advice.

That said, you should look at the total picture. Does your family have a predisposition to high cholesterol and/or heart disease? How's your stress level? How's your weight? How's your BMI? What's your alcohol consumption? How's your diet? How's your overall calorie intake? Any changes besides espresso drinking since your cholesterol level went up?

Even a vegan diet can be unhealthy. It can have a poor balance or proteins/fats/carbs. It can have a high percentage of processed carbohydrates. It can have a high percentage of trans fats. You could be eating too many calories for your physical activity level. You could be drinking too much alcohol. If you're drinking milk in your coffee, then you're not really a vegan (I think you'd be called a lacto-vegetarian.) You're getting saturated fat in the milk, and also in butter if you eat that. If you eat eggs, you're getting saturated fat from them, too. If you don't eat fish, or certain oils, you may not be getting enough Omega-3 fatty acids. It all depends on exactly what you're eating.

Although no-carb diets like Atkins are likely dangerous and ineffective, there is evidence supporting their claim that eating a lot of carbs can increase cholesterol levels (not to mention making us fat -- this is why the no-fat and low-fat diets of the 70s and 80s didn't work.)

A lot depends on how much you eat. I've had more than one doctor tell me that cholesterol levels can change with calorie intake. If calorie intake exceeds what you burn, cholesterol can go up. If calorie intake is equal to or less than what you burn, your cholesterol can go down. One doctor even told me, "It doesn't matter so much what you eat as how much you eat." Perhaps radical, but he said there's evidence supporting that view.

I've experienced the phenomenon myself. About 5 years ago I weighed 210+ lbs (I'm 5'8".) I went on a strict calorie-controlled diet and lost about 50 lbs in 5 months. Calories were held to a rock bottom, doctor-approved, 1250 per day. I wasn't eating much saturated fat before that. I did alter the balance of my diet somewhat, avoiding foods that had a high percentage of calories from fat, avoiding processed (white) carbs, eating more carbs high in fiber. I used artificial sweeteners like Equal and Splenda instead of sugar. But I kept the balance of fats, carbohydrates and proteins roughly in balance with government recommendations. I didn't cut out any food groups. But no matter what I ate, I knew exactly how many calories I was taking in and made sure I didn't exceed the daily limit. I didn't exercise until I had lost about 30 lbs (my reasoning: one major lifestyle change at a time.) By that time, I felt great and wanted to exercise more. I had tons of energy and became quite active. But I certainly didn't exercise 4-5 times a week. After achieving my target weight of 162 lbs, I increased calories to about 1800 per day, which kept my weight steady for nearly four years.

During this time, my cholesterol dropped from over 200 to 145. The HDL was 90. My doctor was very pleased.

About 18 months ago, I gradually started falling off the wagon and have put on 15-20 lbs. Still pretty good, considering where I was, but a setback nonetheless. I'm finding it even harder to maintain or lose weight because it seems the older I get (I'm 55), the fewer calories I need. I'm also getting more sedentary with age, making it even tougher. Anyhow, my cholesterol is back up to about 200. I haven't really changed the balance of foods all that much. I probably eat a little more saturated fat and processed carbs than before, but not radically so. The big difference is the number of calories per day.

It's really simple: calories-in versus calories-out.

My advice: Consult your doctor. Then take a hard look at exactly how much you're eating and what you're eating. Adjust accordingly, with emphasis on matching calorie intake with activity level, balancing the food groups, and reducing/eliminating bad stuff like saturated fats and processed carbs. If you don't do it already, read the labels on the food you eat. They can be very revealing.

For example, skim milk would be better for you than soy milk. Although skim is an animal product, it has zero calories from fat and about 90 calories per one-cup serving. Regular soy milk has about 50% of calories from fat and about 150 calories per one-cup serving. About 50 of those calories come from added sugar. Unsweetened soy milk has only 90 calories per one-cup serving, but still has about 50% calories from fat. Lite soy milk has about 25% calories from fat and 90 calories per one-cup serving, but a significant percentage of the calories come from added sugar. All in all, skim milk is the best choice. I've successfully frothed skim milk. No, it doesn't taste as great as frothed whole milk, but it's not bad. I think it tastes better than soy milk.

But don't forget the milk or soy drink is going to add nearly 100 calories to your daily intake. Fine if you're having one, but they can really add up if you have more than one per day. This might be part of your current problem. A cappuccino made with whole milk and a teaspoon of sugar is going to come in at something like 200-250 calories. A couple of those are going to represent around 25% or more of the calories for a reasonable maintenance diet of 1800-2000 calories per day. Three or four would get you close to half of your allowed calories per day!

As for the bad chemicals in espresso and french press that are supposedly filtered out from drip coffee, I wonder how this correlates with the lower levels of heart disease seen in the espresso-drinking countries of Europe?

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#39: Post by kahvedelisi »

dgreen wrote:As for the bad chemicals in espresso and french press that are supposedly filtered out from drip coffee, I wonder how this correlates with the lower levels of heart disease seen in the espresso-drinking countries of Europe?

(if you scroll down you'll find more info about coffee&blood cholesterol)
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#40: Post by Stanner »

You need more saturated fat. I'm not even joking.

And "raising cholesterol" is meaningless. Which cholesterol does it raise? HDl? Great! LDL? Which type of LDL is it effecting? What about your triglycerides, does it raise them?

You see how a blurb means nothing without context? :D